It has been an interesting last two weeks for Silksworth’s David Bolt, firstly losing out early in his defence of his Hong Kong Classic singles title followed by finding out he had secured a place in the England squad for the 2018 Commonwealth Games which was then capped off by clinching a silver medal after finishing runners up in the Hong Kong Classic Pairs representing England. Partnering Kent’s Taylor Monk the English pair negotiated the round robin group stage losing only one of the eleven group games and then in the semi finals defeated Hong Kong local Tony Cheung  9-2, 6-4 to set up a final against Australia’s Jesse Noronha and Ben Twist, the former took the singles title earlier in the week. With the first set level at 7-7 and Bolt holding shot the Australian Twist produced a stunning final bowl take out to knock the wind out of the English lad’s sails and take the first set 8-7, in the second set Twist produced a string of quality bowls and despite the Taylor/Bolt combination efforts it was not to be as the Aussie’s took the second set and the title 11-1. 

It was always going to be a big ask for Houghton in the Denny Plate as they faced a strong South Shield’s outfit and despite a valiant effort Houghton succumbed to a 34 shot defeat. At Houghton David Armstrong, Tom Patterson, Ian Whorlton and Frankie Froud got off to a flier against Dave Paterson, Stevie Cairns, Kris Storf and Gary Farquhar as they led 12-0 after six ends however within the space of five ends Farquhar had turned it around to lead 16-12, despite Froud getting back to 16-16 the Shield’s quartet turned on the burners to run out 28-18 winners, the other Houghton rink of Mal Baker, Freddie Fletcher, Alan J Dunn and Brian Henderson were always playing catch up against Scott Baker, Paul Sainthouse, Jaxon McKenna & Shaun McIntosh and eventually went down 16-10 which left Shields with a 16 shot advantage. At Shield’s both Houghton squads went down, Michael Wright, Peter Thomson (snr), Dan Todner and Peter Thomson put in a creditable performance against Mal Peach, Josh Minto, James Sneller and Chris Yeomans to only go down by five (21-16) while Joe Sutherland, Terry Todd, Jimmy McAdoo and Richie Mckie never recovered from a slow start and went down 27-14 to Neal Ridley, Jonny Morgan, Stewart Hubbard and Ian McIntosh which left Shields 18 shots up and secured a 92-58 win overall, in the last thirty two Shield’s will face Copeland’s who thumped Eden by 67 shots.

In the Denny Cup Durham pulled off a cracking result against a fancied Hartlepool squad, in a nip and tuck affair the Durham lads held their nerves on the final ends to get home 81-77, in the last thirty two Durham will face York who sneaked past Scarborough by a single shot.
In the ladies Yetton Trophy South Shield’s comfortably beat Hartlepool 89-49 and will next face Cumbria who narrowly defeated Durham 73-71. Houghton ladies now know their opposition in the Yetton Plate after Eden defeated The Parks by 11 shots; the next round of both Yetton competitions takes place on Saturday December 9.

After a tremendous thirteen shot win over Durham in the Egham Trophy South Shield’s are back in action tomorrow as they face Blackpool NH, the following Shield’s squad will take to the green.
At Shields – N.Riches, A.Upstall, P.Dixon, S.McIntosh, J.Tallack, M.Charles, S.Hubbard, I.Riches
At Blackpool – P.Carlin, J.Chapman, J.Sneller, G.Farquhar, M.Robson, K.Paterson, D.Paterson, D.Bolt

The Houghton Sancroft senior squad faced a double header this week as they made road trips to South Shields and Gateshead respectively, sadly for Sancroft they were beaten in both collecting only two points out of a possible ten.

The trip to Shield’s was always going to be tough and so it proved with the only Houghton success coming from Frankie Froud who steered his rink of Peter Thomson (snr), Jimmy Swinney and Freddie Fletcher to a cracking 15-6 win over Bobby Graham. Meanwhile Joe Sutherland, Colin Young, Trevor Joicey and Terry Todd never recovered from an early dropped five against Alan Cummings, it finished 18-10 while George Brown, Brian Race, David Sim and Ian Whorlton endured a torrid afternoon going down 22-3 to Alan Lawton, so overall it was an 18 shot Shield’s win and 4-1 on points.
The following day a trip to Gateshead beckoned, George Brown, Foster Johnson, David Sim and Ian Whorlton made up for the previous days thumping with a comfortable 17-7 win over Albert Patterson while Peter Thomson, Tony Wood, Freddie Fletcher and Frankie Froud were left to rue a couple of dropped five’s in a 17-8 loss to Harry Marshall. The remaining rink of Joe Sutherland, Colin Young, Jimmy Swinney and Terry Todd were a tad unlucky to go do 11-6 to Bob Charlton which sealed a 35-31 Gateshead and a consecutive 4-1 Sancroft loss. Sancroft host The Parks B team on Thursday at 1230 meanwhile the Houghton Kepier squad are in action next Tuesday at the Parks, the start time is 10am.

Latest Group Three Standings -  Stanley 4-18, South Shields 4-13, Gateshead A 3-6, Houghton Sancroft 3-3, Parks B 2-0

The remaining Seniors double fours squad Houghtonians are in first round action against South Shield’s on Tuesday 1230, the following squad will take to the green.
At Houghton – G.Brown, R.Usher, R.Thorpe, M.Davis
At Shield’s – K.Waterson, E.Downes, B.Johnson, H.Shields.

The Houghton ladies Inter club squad return to action in two weeks time as they face Darlington, the following team has been selected for the game on Wednesday December 13 at 1230.
At Houghton - J.Watt, O.Charlton, S.Forster, E.Faith, J.Hume, D.Fenwick, B.Robson, JB.Smith
At Darlington - M.Metcalf, G.Eltringham, J.Baker, F.Phythian, M.Hall, E.Barkes, A.Vout, N.Stephenson

Other games – Hartlepool v Aycliffe, Durham, v South Shields, Gateshead v Ferry hill

There has been plenty of action in the local sections of this season’s national competitions, in the singles an all Shield’s affair saw Ian McIntosh defeat club mate Gary Farquhar 21-10 to set up another local affair against Phil Dixon, fellow Shield’s player Paul Sainthouse had a cracking 21-9 win over West Denton youngster Aaron Robson and will now head to Durham to face Gary Smith who defeated Shield’s James Sneller 21-15. Shaun McIntosh (Shields) beat Durham’s Mark Appleby 21-16 and will play either Michael Laydon (Durham) or Peter Thomson (Houghton), Stewart Hubbard (Shields) notched his third singles win with an impressive 21-15 win at West Denton against Kevin Blaylock to set up a home tie against Gateshead’s Alan Jobling who beat Durham’s Brian Brown 21-17. The southern half of the singles draw is as follows – D.Fenwick (Hartlepool) v P.Hartley (Hartlepool), P.Bostock (Redcar) v P.Mosley (Hartlepool), D.Oram (Hartlepool) v J.Halcrow (Hartlepool), C.Higgins (Hartlepool) v V.O’Neill (Redcar)

In the pairs Phil Smithson and Gary Smith won an all Durham affair against Michael Laydon 21-8 and will next entertain Houghton’s Michael Wright and Richie Mckie who got home after an extra end 17-16 at Durham against Jimmy Hutchinson. Shaun & Ian McIntosh’s (Shields) won the battle of the brothers against Patrick & Peter Thomson at Houghton 17-10 to set up a Shield’s affair against Josh Minto who alongside Chris Yeoman’s eased past Durham’s Stevie Bennett 21-6. Ian Riches (Shields) went down 21-19 at home to Gateshead’s Lee Maughan who will next host Gary Farquhar (Shields). In the south section Ferry hill’s Alan Hind had a cracking 13-12 win at Hartlepool against Glenn Skipp.

In the triples Ian McIntosh (Shields) run of form continues after a cracking final bowl collected a four at Stanley to defeat John Thurlbeck 18-17, McIntosh will host Durham’s Michael Laydon next, Dave Paterson (Shield’s) had a good win at West Denton 17-11 against Daniel Bennett and will face Gary Smith (Durham) next.

Houghton’s Peter Thomson had a good 21-6 home win in the fours over Durham’s Stevie Bennett and will head to West Denton next to face Peter Duffy who beat club mate Daniel Bennett 19-9, Houghton’s Sam Patterson was well beaten 24-6 at home against Gateshead’s Brian Orrell.

In the Over 60’s singles Houghton’s Michael Wright eased past West Denton’s Ken Hooker 21-10 and will have home advantage in the next round against Alan Lawton (Shields). Stanley’s Brett Arkley moved into the next round of the Over 50’s triples with a 23-11 win at Gateshead against Mal Johnston.

In the two bowl singles Jonny Morgan (Shields) had a cracking 21-19 win at West Denton against Aaron Robson to set up a tie against another West Denton player Michael Bennett who in turn defeated Durham’s Jimmy Richardson 21-10.

There was disappointment for the Durham County seniors squad as they were beaten 125-121 by Yorkshire in the first round of the Over 60’s Inter County knock out.

In the Top Ten Premier League Houghton head to Ferryhill today looking to register their first win over the series, losses to Darlington and Durham have left Houghton at the foot of the table alongside Ferryhill. The following side has been selected.
Singles – P.Thomson, Pairs – M.Wright, TW.Todd, Triples – D.Armstrong, R.Thorpe, F.Fletcher, Fours – J.McAdoo, AJ.Dunn, J.Scullion, A.Grimes

Durham’s Gary Smith heads to the Potters resort today as he attempts to retain his Open Singles title, this year’s Grand Final format has been tweaked with a group format involving the last seasons top 32 ranked players of which Smith finished eleventh followed by open draws from the last sixteen to the final. Last season Smith defeated Mark Royal in the Grand Final, on route to his defence Smith lifted the Worksop Open and collected enough ranking points during the campaign for a top thirty two spot, the top ranked player is Paul Maynard.


There was some tremendous news this week as Bowls England announced the players to represent England at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast Australia in April, among the players selected is Silksworth’s David Bolt. After a lengthy selection process the 39 year old former Sandhill View school pupil will become the first Sunderland based bowler to feature in the Commonwealth Games, Bolt is one of a five man male squad alongside the Devon quartet Jamie Chestney, Robert Paxton, Louis Ridout and Sam Tolchard and between them they will compete in either singles, pairs, triples and fours. Bolt has come along way during twenty eight years of playing the sport, from his early days at Barley Mow to his exploits at his current club Silksworth, on the green Bolt has set the bar that many strive to currently reach and plays the game in a sporting and enjoyable manner. Over those 28 years Bolt has built up an impressive CV with a constant stream of titles at all three levels of the game – local, county and nationally, on the international stage he has progressed to a skips role for England and last November secured the much acclaimed Hong Kong Classic Singles title, this selection is just rewards for a stream of consistent performances over the last three years, it is not only a great individual honour but it is a massive boost to the sport in Sunderland and hopefully a wakeup call for a local council who have in recent times have seen the sport as an easy target for cuts.

The full England squad is as follows
Men –David Bolt, Jamie Chestney, Robert Paxton, Louis Ridout, Sam Tolchard
Women – Natalie Chestney, Ellen Falkner, Sian Honour, Katherine Rednall, Sophie Tolchard
Para Bowls Squad – Keiran Rollings, Paul Brown, Mike Robertson, Steve Simmons, Alison Yearling, Mark Wherry & Sue Wherry

Bolt is currently competing in Hong Kong where sadly his attempt at defending his Classic Singles title came unstuck in the second round, a first round 7-3,12-0 win over local bowler Terence Lee was followed by a narrow 6-4, 6-6 defeat at the hands of Simon Yau to end Bolts title defence. However Bolt is still in the running in the Pairs event, alongside fellow England player Taylor Monk the England duo are currently top of their group having won seven of their eight games.    

There were mixed results for the two Houghton teams in the latest round of fixtures the Inter County league as Houghton Gilpin were beaten by Gateshead B while Houghton Kepier beat The Parks. After their opening win Houghton Gilpin were looking for a repeat performance against Gateshead however things didn’t go to plan. At Houghton Mal Baker, Sam Patterson, David Wright and Brian Henderson were well beaten 29-8 by Mark Smith and Alan J Dunn’s rink of Joe Sutherland, David Armstrong and Ronnie Robson went down 19-15 which left the home squad 25 shots adrift. At Gateshead the away squad put in a creditable performance going down by only six shots, Ian Whorlton’s quartet went down 16-8 to T.Pope while John Jones returned Houghton’s only winning card 16-14 against George Hackett, so overall it was a 78-47 (9-1) win for Gateshead, Gilpin have a bye in December.

Houghton Kepier needed a good result after losing their opener 10-0, at Houghton Gary Wallace steered Michael Wright, Bob Johnson and Terry Todd to a 24-19 win over Matthew Raftree however Eric Downes, Bill Davis, Karl Armstrong and Jimmy McAdoo succumbed 23-12 to Ron Goldsmith which left the home squad six shots down. At the Parks both Houghton rinks returned home victorious, Peter Thomson (snr), Tony Wood, Dan Todner and Peter Thomson had to come from behind  to get home 17-16 against Steve Welsh while George Brown, Charlie Wallace, Trevor Joicey and Richie Mckie produced a match winning performance beating Ian Webb 34-6 to secured the away points by 29 shots and the overall match 88-63 (7-3), next for Kepier is a tough one against holders Hartlepool on December 10.

The next round of the Denny Plate takes place today with Houghton needing a perfect storm to get past a strong looking South Shield’s outfit who previously knocked The Parks for fifty plus shots in the last round, the following teams have been selected.

Houghton Team
At Houghton – M.Baker, F.Fletcher, AJ.Dunn, B.Henderson, D.Armstrong, T.Patterson, I.Whorlton, F.Froud
At Shields – M.Wright, P.Thomson, D.Todner, P.Thomson, J.Sutherland, TW.Todd, J.McAdoo, R.Mckie

South Shields Team
At Shields – N.Ridley, S.Hubbard, I.Riches, I.McIntosh, M.Peach, J.Minto, J.Sneller, C.Yeomans
At Houghton – S.Baker, P.Sainthouse, J.McKenna, S.McIntosh, D.Paterson, S.Cairns, K.Storf, G.Farquhar

The Denny Cup also takes place today, there is a rare opportunity for either Gateshead or West Denton to make the last 32 as the two go head to head, there should be a cracking local tie as Hartlepool and Durham lock horns with the winners facing either Scarborough or York.

In the ladies Yetton Trophy South Shields face Hartlepool and Durham face Cumbria, meanwhile in the Yetton Plate Houghton have received a walk over against Darlington and will face either Eden or The Parks next.

There has been more local action taking place this week in this seasons national competitions, in the singles past national champion Durham’s Gary Smith booked his place in the next round with a 21-16 win over club mate Malcolm Wright, Smith will host Shield’s James Sneller next, Paul Sainthouse (Shields) had a cracking 21-15 win over Stanley stalwart Eddie Henry and will next entertain West Denton’s Aaron Robson who recorded an impressive 21-10 win over Gateshead’s Alex Bryden. Neal Ridley (Shield’s) narrowly went down 21-18 at home against Gateshead’s Alan Jobling, with David Bolt Commonwealth Games commitments clashing with the national championships at Melton Mowbray in April Bolt has given up his singles tie therefore Jobling will face Durham’s Brian Brown, things are looking clearer in the southern section of the draw, David Fenwick won an all Hartlepool affair with Albert Ward 21-17 and club-mate Dale Oram defeated Thornaby’s Joseph Dadd 21-7. In the pairs Durham’s Gary Smith eased past West Denton’s Clive Knott 18-12 which sets up an all Durham affair against Michael Laydon next. Gary Farquhar (Shields) ground out a 21-16 win over Stanley’s Eddie Henry however club mate Neal Ridley went down 19-14 against Stanley’s Garry Robson. In the triples Hartlepool’s Glenn Skipp narrowly lost 14-13 at home to Redcar’s Paul Bostock while Gary Smith (Durham) progressed with a 17-13 win at Shield’s against Phil Dixon, Stanley’s Garry Robson defeated West Denton’s Cyril Swick 30-14 and Durham’s Michael Laydon beat Gateshead’s Brian Orrell 17-6, the Houghton trio of Michael Wright, Patrick Thomson and Peter Thomson defeated Stanley’s James McKenna 18-9. In the Over 60’s singles last year’s qualifier Alan Lawton (Shields) defeated Durham’s Ron Dixon 21-7 while in the Over 50’s triples the Houghton trio of Colin Brown, David Armstrong and Keith Makepeace had a cracking 14-12 win over Shield’s Billy Ferry. In the Champion of Champions Stanley’s Brett Arkley booked his place in the area final with a cracking 21-16 win at Shield’s against David Bolt, in the area final Arkley will face either Ferryhill’s Alan Hind or Hartlepool’s Marc Squirrell.

There was some great news for South Shield’s Nina Riches as she had landed an England trial, the South Shield’s star has been one of the most improved women bowlers and fully deserves the opportunity, the only other local inclusion is Hartlepool’s Lauren Mosley, the trial takes place at Rugby on December 2.

The latest round of fixtures in the Seniors Premier league were held at Durham and it turned out to be a good afternoon for the two Houghton squads. Peter Thomson, Richard Thorpe and Frankie Froud notched there second win with a 19-11 win over winless Darlington A while the Houghtonians triple of Joe Sutherland, Freddie Fletcher and Terry Todd defeated Gateshead B 16-12. The other games saw unbeaten Stanley A lose 16-10 against Gateshead A, Darlington B cruise past Ferryhill B 30-6 and hosts Durham defeat Ferryhill A 18-14, the next round of fixtures will be held at Darlington in December.

Latest Standings - Stanley A 4-6, Gateshead A 3-6, Houghtonians 4-6, Gateshead B 4-5, Stanley B 3-4, Darlington B 4-4, Houghton A 3-4, Ferryhill B 3-2, Ferryhill A 3-0, Durham 3-2, Darlington A 4-0

The Durham County Seniors face Yorkshire this week in the national Over 60’s Inter County knock-out, the venue for the home leg is Durham while York hosts the away leg. Last season Yorkshire reached the semi finals while Durham went out in the first round to Lincolnshire, the following squad has been selected for the game on Tuesday starting at 1230pm.

At Durham – S.Krimpen, R.Robinson (both Durham), S.Land (Aycliffe), D.Webb (Stanley), W.Routledge, G.Alderson, P.Heath (all Durham), W.Ferry (Shields), M.Robinson (Durham), W.Bell, B.Houghton (both Stanley), A.Musgrove (Durham)

At York – G.Peacock (Darlington), R.Metcalfe (Ferryhill), D.McDonald (Aycliffe), A.Stephenson (Darlington), B.Hutchinson, J.Potter, F.Edwards, B.Attwood (all Aycliffe), A.Hind (Ferryhill) A.Mole, A.Taylor, K.Wilford (all Hartlepool)

In the Seniors Inter Club the Houghton Sancroft squad will look to get there season kick started as they face a double header this week, on Tuesday they head to South Shields and then the following day they go to Gateshead, Houghton Kepier host Gateshead B on Thursday at Houghton 1230 start.

At the recent Bowls Durham AGM Houghton Dairy Lane’s Jeff Wilson and Bishop Auckland’s Eileen Atkinson were elected as County Presidents for 2018, sadly both could be the final elected Presidents as there are no nominated successors for 2019.


There was disappointment for Houghton in the second round of the Denny Cup as they were beaten 82-55 by West Denton. At Houghton the home squad finished level, Frankie Froud’s (pictured) quartet of Mal Baker, Stevie Tindale and Ian Whorlton returned the only Houghton winning scorecard as they defeated Herbie Blakelock 21-17, Brian Henderson meanwhile went down 20-16 to an impressive Peter Duffy. At West Denton Freddie Fletcher, Terry Todd, John Jones and Richie Mckie put in a creditable performance only going down 15-13 to Clive Knott however the game was decided on the remaining rink, Sam Patterson, Dan Todner, Michael Davis and Peter Thomson found it tough going against Craig Cooper going down 30-5 which left the away squad 27 shots adrift and West Denton winners by the said 27 shots. Houghton drop into the Denny Plate while in the next round of the Denny Cup West Denton will face Gateshead who defeated a Stanley outfit by three shots despite only having one winning rink. The other local ties saw Durham beat Darlington 97-50 to set up a clash against Hartlepool who crushed Redcar 80-26.

After their surprise Denny Cup exit South Shield’s faced The Parks in the Denny Plate, with six Liberty players and an extra Scottish internationalist the Shields outfit should go a long way in the second tier competition and so it proved as they thumped The Parks by 52 shots with 24 un-played ends. At Shield’s Neal Ridley, Stewart Hubbard, Ian Riches and the new World Singles qualifier Ian McIntosh beat Peter Dawson 17-4, Jaxon McKenna, Paul Sainthouse, James Snellar and Shaun McIntosh defeated Matthew Raftree 14-6 to leave Shields with a 21 shot advantage at home. At The Parks both Shield’s squads recorded wins, Mal Peach, Scott Baker, Josh Minto and Gary Farquhar beat Maurice White 14-10 while Phil Dixon, Stevie Cairns, Kris Storf and David Bolt cruised to a 30-3 win over S.Welsh to leave the away squad 31 shots up. In the next round Shields will face Houghton on November 18.

In the Over 60’s Inter Club double fours the Houghtonian squad came close to causing an upset against past national champions Stanley. The home quartet of Peter Thomson, Foster Johnson, Peter Harding and Frankie Froud were left rueing a slow start against Brian Houghton, trailing 12-1 Froud rallied and thanks to a good six got back to without two shots however had to settle for a 20-14 defeat. At Stanley Terry Todd’s quartet of Joe Sutherland, Freddie Fletcher and David Wright looked in control against David Webb as they led 12-4 with only seven ends to play however the wheels came off as Todd failed to score dropping 12 shots in the process and eventually went down 16-12 and seal a 36-26 Stanley victory, in the next round Stanley will face West Denton, South Shield’s B were beaten 47-26 by Durham B while both Darlington squads made progress and will meet each other next.

In the next round of the Top Club South Shield’s eased pasted West Denton 12-4, both singles went to Shields as the Nina Riches won the ladies 12-10 and Ian McIntosh ran out a 16-5 winner, in the triples Ann Upstall, Phil Dixon and Ian Riches won 23-6 and Jean Chapman, Pam Carlin, Chris Yeomans and Shaun McIntosh got home in the fours 20-13, the only loss came in the pairs as Jackie Tallack and David Bolt were beaten 12-8. In the next round Shield’s will host Cumbria who drew 8-8 with Blackpool but got through on the overall shots 64-60.

Former Sunderland star now enjoying life at Shields David Bolt made the trip to Perth this week for the World Bowls Tour’s Scottish Open, after earning his spot via the qualifiers at Carlisle Bolt faced the six times World Champion Alex Marshall in the first round. Bolt started well and took the opening set 8-6 before Marshall hit back to take the second 9-4, sadly Bolt’s hopes were dashed in the cut and thrust best of three tie breakers as Marshall took the first two. It is a busy time for Bolt as he had flown out to Hong Kong to defend his Hong Kong Classic singles title that he won last November, Bolt is part of a mixed four player England team alongside Taylor Monk, Kirsty Richards and Lorraine Kuhler. The singles event starts today and finishes tomorrow and comprises of forty invited overseas players and eighty eight local players, in the first round Bolt will face the host clubs Terence Lee. Bolt will then partner Monk in a round robin pairs consisting of forty invited overseas and fifty six local players which starts on Monday until Sunday November 19.

The second round of fixtures in this seasons Inter County league takes place tomorrow with both Houghton squads in action, Gilpin will be looking to build on their opening win as they take on Gateshead B while Kepier need to get a positive result against The Parks, the following teams have been selected.
Gilpin v Gateshead B
At Houghton – M.Baker, S.Patterson, D.Wright, B.Henderson, J.Sutherland, D.Armstrong, R.Robson, AJ.Dunn
At Gateshead – M.Noble, T.Patterson, F.Fletcher, J.Jones, K.Waterson, J.Biggerstaff, W.Roberts, I.Whorlton

Kepier v The Parks
At Houghton – M.Wright, B.Johnson, T.Todd, G.Wallace, E.Downes, A.Patterson, K.Armstrong, J.McAdoo
At The Parks – T.Joicey, C.Wallace, G.Brown, R.Mckie, P.Thomson (snr), A.Wood, D.Todner, P.Thomson

In Group 2 of the Seniors Inter Club league winless Houghton Gilpin head to pointless South Shields on Tuesday (1.30pm), in Group 3 this week’s planned game for Sancroft against The Parks B was cancelled by The Parks which means a frustrated Sancroft squad still have only played one game, that should change as they head to Shields on Tuesday November 21 then to Gateshead the following day. In Group 4 Kepier entertain Gateshead B on Wednesday November 23 and then travel to The Parks A on Tuesday November 29.

Latest Standings
Group 1 – Aycliffe 2-8½, Darlington A 2-8, Durham 2-2, Spennymoor 2-1½, Shildon 0-0
Group 2 – Darlington B 3-14, Ferryhill 3-10, Hartlepool A 2-9, Houghton Gilpin 3-2, South Shields 3-0
Group 3 – Stanley 3-13, South Shields 2-9, Gateshead A 2-2, Houghton Sancroft 1-1, Parks B 2-0
Group 4 - Hartlepool B 3-12, Durham B 2-9, Parks A 3-6½, Gateshead B 2-2½, Houghton Kepier 2-0

The next round of the Seniors Premier League takes place at Durham on Thursday, unbeaten Stanley A face second placed Gateshead A, Houghton A take on winless Darlington A and the Houghtonians face Gateshead B, host club Durham play Ferryhill A with both clubs looking for the first win and the remaining tie will see Ferryhill B v Darlington B.
Houghton A v Darlington A – P.Thomson (snr), R.Thorpe, F.Froud
Houghtonians v Gateshead B – J.Sutherland, F.Fletcher, TW.Todd

Latest Standings - Stanley A 3-6, Gateshead A 2-4, Houghtonians 3-4, Stanley B 3-4, Gateshead B 3-4, Darlington B 3-2, Ferryhill B 2-2, Houghton A 2-2, Ferryhill A 2-0, Durham 2-0, Darlington A 3-0,

In the Top Ten Houghton’s cancelled fixture against Stanley has been rearranged for Saturday December 2.

South Shields are in Egham Trophy action tomorrow as they take on Durham, both teams had comfortable first round wins so should be evenly matched, the following Shield’s squad has been selected
At Shields – A.Upsall, P.Carlin, P.Dixon, S.McIntosh, J.Tallack, M.Charles, S.Hubbard, C.Yeomans
At Durham – N.Riches, J.Chapman, J.Sneller, G.Farquhar, M.Robson, K.Paterson, D.Paterson, I.,Riches

There has been more local national competition action taking place, in the singles South Shield’s Phil Dixon secured a return trip to West Denton after a 21-12 win at West Denton over Cyril Swick, Dixon will face Dave Morrison who won an all Denton affair against Peter Duffy 21-19. Houghton’s Peter Thomson had a good 21-10 win at Durham against Ron Dixon and will return to Durham to face Michael Laydon in the next round, an all Shield’s affair saw James Sneller beat Jonny Morgan 21-16. In the southern section of the draw Hartlepool’s Josh Halcrow progressed with a 21-13 win at Ferryhill against Ken Gill, Paul Mosley came out on top in an all Hartlepool affair against Glen Skipp 21-13. In the pairs David Bolt (Shields) was beaten 15-11 at The Parks by Matthew Raftree, Durham’s Michael Laydon had a good 22-16 win at West Denton over youngster Aaron Robson and Gary Farquhar (Shields) beat club mate Paul Sainthouse 23-7, the Shield’s McIntosh brothers had a good 19-9 win at Durham over the Barkess brothers, down south Aycliffe’s Barry Attwood had a cracking 19-18 win at Hartlepool against Paul Mosley. In the triples Phil Dixon (Shield’s) defeated West Denton’s Aaron Robson 20-16 and will next host Durham’s Gary Smith who narrowly beat Houghton’s Sam Patterson 18-15, Patrick Thomson (Houghton) eased past The Parks Maurice White 20-3 while South Shield’s Stewart Hubbard defeated Houghton’s Dan Todner 20-8. In the Over 50’s triples Stanley’s Brian Harris defeated Durham’s Michael Laydon 22-11, there was however better news for Laydon in the mixed pairs with a 19-16 home win over Shield’s Phil Dixon.

Following the County Liberty Trophy squad day the Durham selectors have picked what looks on  paper a cracking team to take on Cumbria in December, the Durham lads will be keen to put in a better performance than last season’s 50 shot beating at Cumbria.
J.Forcer, C.Higgins, M.Squirrel, P.Hartley (all Hartlepool), M.Barkess, K.Minnis, R.Bewick, GR.Smith (all Durham), P.Dixon, M.Peach, I.Riches, D.Bolt (all South Shields), J.Halcrow (Hartlepool), M.Higgins (Durham), G.Skipp, V.O’Neill (both Hartlepool), B.Arkley, B.Houghton (both Stanley), M.Jones (Hartlepool), J.Thurlbeck (Stanley), M.Ray, C.Boston (both Hartlepool), P.Smithson (Durham), P.Mosley (Hartlepool).
Reserves – G.Farquhar, J.Snellar, P.Sainthouse (all Shields), B.Henderson, M.Laydon, M.Wright (all Durham)

The England selectors have named the Under 25 trial teams, the only regional representative in men’s is West Denton’s Aaron Robson while in the ladies trial team Redcar’s Amica Fordy gets a chance.

The local bowls scene sadly lost one of its best green keeper’s this week as the former Hylton Colliery Welfare grounds men Jimmy Crone (80) sadly passed away, during the 90’s the quality of the playing surface produced by Jimmy attracted many of the area’s top players to the Colliery Welfare club which saw the club become a major force in the Sunderland & District.   


South Shields eased past Houghton in the first round of this seasons Egham Trophy, last season Shield’s reached the quarter finals so it was always a big ask for Houghton to get a result and so it proved as Shield’s comfortably won on all four rinks. At Houghton Terry Todd’s quartet of Joan Watt, Tony Wood and Florence Phythian were beaten 24-16 by Gary Farquhar while Freddie Fletcher’s quartet of E.Morris, Sam Patterson and Brenda Robson were beaten 25-10 by Stewart Hubbard, those scores left Shield’s 23 shots to the good. At Shield’s both Houghton squads were well beaten, Peter Thomson (snr), Evelyn Barkes, Joan Baker and Richie Mckie never recovered from a 12-0 start against Chris Yeomans, it finished 27-9 while Maureen Hall, Tony Grimes, Norma Stephenson and Frankie Froud went down 27-15 to Shaun McIntosh which left Shield’s 30 shots up, overall it was 103-50 to Shield’s who will face Durham in the next round after they defeated West Denton by 15 shots.

Houghton will lock horns with West Denton today in the Denny Cup, the winners will play either Stanley or Gateshead. The following Houghton squad has been selected.

At Houghton – M.Noble, AJ.Dunn, J.McAdoo, B.Henderson, M.Baker, S.Tindale, I.Whorlton, F.Froud
Reserves – A.Patterson, M.Wright

At West Denton – S.Patterson D.Todner, M.Davis, P.Thomson (jnr), F.Fletcher, TW.Todd, J.Jones, R.Mckie
Reserve – A.Wood

Other local ties will see Durham face Darlington and Hartlepool face Redcar with the winners meeting each other in the next round.

After their disappointing exit in the Denny Cup South Shield’s drop into the Denny Plate and are in action today as they take on The Parks, on paper they should have a decent run in the competition as they have a cracking looking squad.
At Shields - N.Ridley, S.Hubbard, I.Riches, I.McIntosh, J.Mckenna, P.Sainthouse, J.Sneller, S.McIntosh
At The Parks - M.Peach, J.Minto, G.Farquhar, C.Yeomans, P.Dixon, W.Ferry, K.Storf, D.Bolt

The next round of the top club takes place tomorrow, South Shield’s host West Denton, Durham host Hartlepool and Great Aycliffe host Eden. In the ladies Yetton Trophy South Shield’s were due to play West Denton today however due to illness West Denton have conceded the tie, that leaves Shield’s awaiting the winners of the Hartlepool v Redcar tie. In the Yetton Plate Houghton’s tie against Darlington will now take place on November 18.

There has been plenty action locally in this season’s national competitions, in the singles Gary Farquhar (Shields) powered to an impressive 21-3 win over Gateshead’s Malcolm Johnston which sets up an all Shield’s affair against Ian McIntosh after McIntosh edged past Durham’s Mark Higgins 21-17. Durham’s Michael Laydon had a cracking 21-6 win over South Shield’s Alan Lawton while Shaun McIntosh (Shields) eased past Durham’s Andrew Barkess 21-6 and will face club mate Carl Elliott in the next round. Houghton’s Sam Patterson went down 21-12 at Durham against Ron Dixon who will next host Houghton’s Peter Thomson, in the south section Paul Hartley won an all Hartlepool affair against Matthew Ray 21-12. In the pairs David Bolt (Shields) cruised to a 28-7 win over Durham’s Michael Barkess which sets up a trip to the Parks against Mathew Raftree, Durham’s Gary Smith had a cracking 20-9 win at Stanley against John Thurlbeck and will next host West Denton’s Clive Knott, Houghton’s Michael Wright & Richie Mckie came back from 17-6 down to defeat West Denton’s Peter Duffy 27-18 while South Shield’s Josh Minto had a comfortable 27-6 win at Houghton against Sam Patterson, in the south section Hartlepool’s Glen Skipp defeated Paul Bostock 17-8. In the triples Gary Farquhar received a walk over which sets up a home tie against Durham’s Mark Higgins, Michael Laydon moved into the next round with a 18-14 win at West Denton over Michael Bennett. In the fours Gary Farquhar (Shields) won a classic at Durham against Michael Laydon 20-19, the only other tie has seen Stanley’s Brett Arkley receive a walk over. In the Two bowl singles Gateshead’s Alan Jobling progressed with a 21-9 home win over West Denton’s Raymond Robson. David Bolt (Shield’s) recorded a second win in the champion of champions after defeating Gateshead’s Mark Smith 21-8, Bolt will host Stanley’s Brett Arkley next. In the mixed pairs Phil Dixon (Shields) held his nerve in a low scoring 13-12 win over West Denton’s Herbie Blacklock, Dixon heads to Durham next to face Michael Laydon. Houghton’s Michael Wright, Terry Todd and Frankie Froud progressed into the next round of the Over 50’s triples with a hard fought 18-16 home win over Durham’s Jim Hutchinson’s.

The latest round of the Seniors Premier League took place at Houghton this week and it was a good day for the host club as both Houghton triples recorded wins. The Houghton A trio of Peter Thomson (snr), Richard Thorpe and Frankie Froud turned around a 10-8 deficit in spectacular fashion against Durham as the Houghton triple rattled off 20 shots over six ends to run out 28-11 winners. The Houghtonian’s triple of Joe Sutherland, Freddie Fletcher and Terry Todd looked down and out at 15-7 down to unbeaten Stanley B but Todd rallied the troops and scored 21 shots over the second half to end the Stanley unbeaten record 28-16. The other two games saw Stanley A maintain their unbeaten record with a 19-10 win over Darlington B and Gateshead B beat Darlington A 25-15.

David Bolt heads to Perth this weekend to take part in the World Bowls Tour Scottish International Open, the former Sunderland star has a tough opener against the third seed Scotland’s Alex Marshall, Bolt is due to play on Monday afternoon at 4pm and can be followed live via the WBT stream at

 There was more good news for the Shield’s club at the World Singles qualifying event held at Carlisle last weekend as Ian McIntosh (pictured) secured his place in the World Singles. In the quarter finals McIntosh defeated Redcar’s Vinnie O’Neil before taking out Blackpool’s Chris Gale in the semi-finals who had previously ended Durham’s Gary Smith’s hopes. In the final McIntosh faced Gateshead’s Alex Brydon, it turned out to be a straight sets win for the Shield’s star 5-3, 6-2, McIntosh will face former world champion Mervyn King at Potters in January.

The Bowls Durham AGM will be held at Houghton Dairy Lane on Tuesday November 14 at 7pm.

The Sunderland & District AGM will take place at Houghton Dairy Lane on Saturday November 25 at 2pm, all clubs should have received the agenda’s etc either by e-mail or post, any club that hasn’t received them please contact Jim Huntingdon on 0191-5498520





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